Baldur’s Gate 3: Should you choose an original character or create your own?

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Choosing your character at the beginning of the game is one of the most important parts of a CRPG. Your character will define your path, your story and how you can react to the world around you. Baldur’s Gate 3 has different options for starting characters. You can become your own hero or take on the role of an original character.


Original characters have a default physical appearance, class, stats, and personality. While you will be able to control their dialogue, these characters have set intentions and abilities. Whether you decide to play with a pre-made character or start from scratch is up to you.

Choose a source character

baldurs gate 3 astarion level up screen to level 3

There are seven source characters to choose from when starting a new game. They will come with their own class, but you can select their Subclass. As they level up within the game, you can choose certain spells and abilities for them.

Source characters are seven of the 12 classes available to you. These characters are your respective companions within the game.

  • high elf wizard
  • githyanki fighter
  • human warlock
  • Half-elf Cleric
  • human wizard
  • Asmodeus-Tiefling Barbarian
  • the dark impulse

When starting out as an origin character, you will receive a special introduction at the beginning of the game that will show that character’s backstory before the shipwreck.

If you are a custom character, you need to know the histories of these companions in order for them to trust you.

If you start out as a fellow origin, you already know your story and can dig deeper than you would if you were an outsider.

You won’t miss other characters by choosing a source character. You will still be able to group up with the other companions.

(The Dark Urge is the exception)

Your race and class allow you to have unique dialogue options as you play. These dialogue options could greatly benefit your ability to progress with certain events.

For example, as a druid, you will have natural instincts for nature and animal handling that you can use while talking to creatures and other druids in the game.

As a paladin, you can have the intimidation and intelligence abilities, allowing you to convince guards to get out of your way or to get the truth out of someone.

The dark impulse explained

baldurs gate 3 panel from hell shows dark drive on character creation

All original characters have their own physical appearance and class, except for The Dark Urge.

The Dark Urge is a single origin character and the only origin that allows you to fully customize your character. You can choose your own race, class and skills. What makes this origin unique is its dialog options.

Similar to the Ilithid powers you get from the Nautiloid worm inside your brain, The Dark Urge is something inside of you that needs to do evil. This impulse will emerge as dialogue options.

You will not remember your past and you will feel happy and excited by blood and death. If you give in to this urge, you could end up killing an important character.

This origin story is meant to be a twisted Baldur’s Gate 3 experience. This dark impulse will sometimes push you to kill without your consent.

Even if you choose this origin character, you don’t have to give in or accept bad deeds. Your choices are still yours, but you’ll experience things in-game differently as you try to fight him.

Create a custom character

baldurs gate 3 custom character screen tav premade

By creating your own character from scratch, you get to choose your skills and your story. The plus side is that you can play with the Character Creator screen and all 100 skin tones and mythical races of him.

If you decide to create your own custom character, you will still have access to all of the source characters except The Dark Urge.

Creating a custom character is a great way to balance your team by selecting a race and class that doesn’t have companions.

Gaining the partner’s trust and approval will allow you to delve into their personal story and side quests. It will just take you longer to figure out their story than if you were playing as them.

You can also control your teammates by selecting their icons while they are with you in the party. You can walk like them and talk to people like them. Therefore, you can have the best of both worlds by choosing a custom character.

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